Monday, August 24, 2015

Trump's Agenda

Guest post by Political Sphere

Buck Sexton, a Blaze radio personality, recently held a # TeamBuckPoll to gain an understanding of how his listeners viewed Trump. He offered 5 options: (a) I would vote for Trump, no question; (b) Thinking about it, we will see; (c) Not my guy, but happy he is in the race; (d) He is a clown, I wish he would go away; or (e) I have my own take on this. The rough results were that somewhere between 35-40% of his listeners answered c, with the remainder split about equally between all of the other answers.

My answer is e. The reality is that Trump is worse than a clown, and it is dangerous to continue to have him in the race, either the primary or the general election.

Everyone needs to ask why Trump would run. Trump touts the slogan that he is running to “make America great again.”  Trump explained himself, in the first Republican debate claiming he is able to get whatever he wants by making campaign donations. For example, he required the Clintons to attend his daughter’s wedding. So Trump would be much more able to “make America great again” if he would cease to run. If Trump were to remain outside of the White House, he could continue to “buy and sell politicians,” giving him significantly greater power over the direction of the country.

But he must have some motivation for running. My speculation is that the Tea Party-style candidates, such as Ted Cruz and Scott Walker and Rand Paul, refuse to do his bidding. Instead they stick to their values, regardless of how much money is given to their campaign. The only way to stop them, then, would be to ensure that the Tea Party vote is neutralized. Only then would he be able to continue to conduct business as usual, “buying and selling politicians.”

The “straight talk” and “anti-pc” rhetoric are the reasons so many good people do seem to like him, or at least appreciate the fact that he is in the race. Instead, all I see is a caricature of a Tea Party conservative, an SNL skit version of us. I see an elite New York progressive making fun of my beliefs by contorting them.

It’s an act. A few examples:

At his presidential announcement, Trump stated “When Mexico sends its people, they’re not sending their best, … They’re sending people that have lots of problems, and they’re bringing those problems with us[sic]. They’re bringing drugs. They’re bringing crime. They’re rapists. And some, I assume, are good people.”

Most of the illegal immigrants I have met are generally good people. We do not enforce the border laws; thus, just like the speed limit, it is consistently ignored even by good people. Yes, there are plenty of bad people with lots of problems also coming over, and we do need to enforce our borders in order to keep this country’s culture great. However, Trump goes to the extreme, setting up the discussion on the immigration problem as an us v. them thing.

More recently,Trump discussed the situation in Iraq. Trump’s solution boils down to “We take over the oil, which we should have done in the first place.” This assumes that the Iraq war really is and always was a “war for oil,” just as liberal progressives have always believed. Yes, ISIS has managed to take some of the oil fields in Iraq, but the vast majority of Iraqi oil remains out of the reach of ISIS, in the southeast of Iraq, closer to Basra, and in the Kurdish controlled area in the northeast of Iraq.

Finally, at the debate, Trump was unable to explain why and when he became a Republican, a conservative. Trump was willing to say that he went to the Republican convention in 1988. But that was after the improvement during the previous eight years under Reagan, when only the most die hard blue dog Democrats were willing to remain in the Democratic Party and back Dukakis. So, while he was nominally a Republican briefly, Trump left the Republican Party in 1999, considering a run as the candidate for the Reform Party, with positions trending more toward the political left, but ultimately switching to the Democrat Party. Trump did not switch back until 2011, in time to consider a presidential bid as a Republican at that time. It seems that he is merely an opportunist, not a conservative.

A Picture of the house Trump sought to take through
eminent domain. Picture from The Daily Mail.
Trump’s progressivism is further borne out by the one issue he remains consistent on: eminent domain. Trump has repeatedly used eminent domain to develop his own projects. The article I link to describes how Trump used eminent domain in Atlantic City to try evicting an elderly woman from her home of 30 years, just so he could have a new parking lot for limousines. It also describes how Trump tried to take a storefront, that Russian immigrants had just purchased for $500,000 to start a pawn shop, for a fraction of its value: $174,000. When Kelo v. New London, 545 US 469 (2005) was decided, Trump did not denounce it, like many on both the right and left. Instead Trump explained that he believed it was not only a legally correct decision, but that it was good that the government could take property from some private owners to transfer to well connected developers. This is the crony capitalism that the Tea Party denounces, backed by the candidate currently leading in the polls.

Even if I am wrong, and Trump is completely honest in his beliefs and has truly become a conservative, I personally would still much rather have most of the other candidates, who can not only spout off the political positions that we conservatives want to hear, but can even communicate the rationale behind those positions and the flaws in the progressive position.

I am not convinced that Trump can present logical reasoning that will ensure that he will make the correct decision regardless of what issues plague this country after the election is over. I could not vote for him if he were the candidate in the general election and do not believe he benefits the party in any way by being in the race.

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